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Author Topic: 1912 US patent for peg top start  (Read 1472 times)

ta0

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1912 US patent for peg top start
« on: September 09, 2022, 02:37:15 PM »

I found an image apparently from an unknown US patent from 1912. I haven't found the patent yet, but I'll put the image here for future reference. I'm always interested in different ways of starting a top, and this one is a little different from others I have seen:

« Last Edit: September 09, 2022, 02:43:54 PM by ta0 »
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Iacopo

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Re: 1912 US patent for peg top start
« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2022, 03:33:39 PM »

I like the idea, it seems easy to start the top in that way. 
But I am sure that it is more rewarding to start a throw top in the normal way, (after learning how).
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ta0

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Re: 1912 US patent for peg top start
« Reply #2 on: September 10, 2022, 01:16:54 PM »

I looked a little bit for the patent. I didn't find it, but found two other patents for unusual ways of starting a top. However, I have my doubts that they work as implemented on the patents.
 
This is a blow top, but it's plain and smooth with no wings or a turbine, what is surprising (US Pat. 854,646, by Daniel P. James of Eureka, Illinois, May 1, 1907):



The top is accelerated while hanging from a magnetic needle. I tried this with a little metal finger top and was not successful to spin it to any appreciable speed. It might work with a very light top, but I doubt it's useful in practice. On the other hand, specialized blow tops work very well. In particular, we know that just two spheres glued to each other (hurricane balls / tornado spheres) can be spun to high speeds.

Another way of starting a top is like a buzzer (US Pat 924,718, by Bernhard Zipfel of Toledo, Ohio, June 15, 1909):



It's not the first buzzer-like top I see (Cyril has one in his collection that I helped him figure out how to start). However, it's difficult for me to believe that the top would release the string from such deep grooves while spinning fast. But perhaps it does work thanks to centrifugal force . . .   :-\
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Jeremy McCreary

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Re: 1912 US patent for peg top start
« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2022, 03:36:04 PM »

Sorry, I don't get how this works in practice.

I'm always interested in different ways of starting a top....

Me, too. Really enjoy making my own starters, and LEGO turns out to be a good way to make all kinds -- vintage, modern, and "discovered".

The "discovered" starters are the ones I thought up on my own. Or so I thought at the time. Sooner or later, nearly all of these turn up in a book or a large vintage top collection like ta0's and Cyril's.

When I examine a vintage starter in person, I often get the feeling that the starter was at least as important to the maker as the top itself. I can toltally relate.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2022, 03:40:51 PM by Jeremy McCreary »
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Jeremy McCreary

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Re: 1912 US patent for peg top start
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2022, 03:51:06 PM »

Anyone, ballpark, what's the minimum useful speed for a typical 2-inch peg top in RPM? This speed will be above the top's inherent critical speed by some "useful" margin.
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ta0

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Re: 1912 US patent for peg top start
« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2022, 04:01:38 PM »

Sorry, I don't get how this works in practice.
Do you mean Zipfel's patent?
You first put the string on both grooves, all the way to the center. Then you work it like a buzzer toy. From the patent:

Quote
The cord is then twisted as in full lines Fig.1. The top is now made to spin rapidly first in one direction and then the other in the manner of a buzz until it has acquired a high velocity. Now by tilting the spinning cord to an angle of approximately 60 degrees and holding the same near the floor while at this angle with one hand close to the floor and then by slackening the upper portion of the
looped cord to free it from the tension employed in spinning, the same will be detached from the top by passing through the slots,the operation being facilitated by reason of the slots being disposed in diverging planes with their outer portions nearer together than their inner portions. The top being now released falls to the floor and continues to spin.

Anyone, ballpark, what's the minimum useful speed for a typical 2-inch peg top in RPM? This speed will be above the top's inherent critical speed by some "useful" margin.
For regular size tops around 1200 RPM.
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Jeremy McCreary

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Re: 1912 US patent for peg top start
« Reply #6 on: September 14, 2022, 02:38:53 AM »

Thanks for the minimum useful speed.

No, not Zipfel's. I meant the starting method that kicked off this topic.
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ta0

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Re: 1912 US patent for peg top start
« Reply #7 on: September 14, 2022, 10:21:41 AM »

I have only seen that image, not the patent itself. But I think it's an example of a top that is started by looping the string just one time around the crown and pulling the string pass it.  We discussed such tops on this thread (I should have posted it there): Speed Top and 1 wrap starter tops
The way the string crosses over the holder assures that tension is kept. This tension also keeps the top against the holder until the end of the pull.
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Jeremy McCreary

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Re: 1912 US patent for peg top start
« Reply #8 on: September 15, 2022, 12:51:01 AM »

OK, I get it now. Parts 8, 9. and 12 all belong to the holder's handle.

When I have access to my LEGO again (another 2-3 months?), I may try a knock-off.
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ta0

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Re: 1912 US patent for peg top start
« Reply #9 on: May 16, 2024, 03:17:08 PM »

I finally got a FA-LO top, which is the buzzer-started top I had first tried at Cyril's.

This is the one from Cyril:



This is mine:



And these are the instructions and trick sheet:



It works quite well. I have done several of the not-so-easy tricks on the trick sheet. The top can be caught in the air so it rewinds itself and you can spin it up again.

Mine was made in Swansea, Wales (UK) by Marx but Cyril's was made in the US by Charmore, N. J. (a Louis Marx company, I believe). The patent by Norman Jarand Rivers of Tucson, Arizona, is from 1944, US2360593:




« Last Edit: May 16, 2024, 04:03:09 PM by ta0 »
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ortwin

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Re: 1912 US patent for peg top start
« Reply #10 on: May 17, 2024, 01:55:34 AM »

Video is badly needed! Either a link to an existing one, or,.......



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ta0

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Re: 1912 US patent for peg top start
« Reply #11 on: May 17, 2024, 10:58:07 AM »

Video is badly needed! Either a link to an existing one, or,.......

I haven't found any videos so I'm planning to make one.  ;)
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jim in paris

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Re: 1912 US patent for peg top start
« Reply #12 on: May 17, 2024, 12:54:13 PM »

great toy !
they have improved the shape of the racket
and added the edges
is it difficult to detached ,to release the string ?

thanx for sharing
jim
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ta0

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Re: 1912 US patent for peg top start
« Reply #13 on: May 17, 2024, 01:17:18 PM »

I found out from this very good article from a Russian (!) figurine collector that: "After the end of WWII "Louis Marx & Company" registered a new subsidiary, "Charmore Company", named in honor of David Marx's wife Charlene."  Marx was an American company but also had manufacturing in Europe.

is it difficult to detached ,to release the string ?

The secrete is to release the tension when the string becomes untwisted between the twist-right and the twist-left phases. If you time it correctly, centrifugal force will open the string and the top will be released.
Some of the tricks require releasing the top and sending it in a specific direction and I find that more difficult, specially upwards when you spun it sideways.

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ta0

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Re: 1912 US patent for peg top start
« Reply #14 on: May 18, 2024, 07:35:38 PM »

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ortwin

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Re: 1912 US patent for peg top start
« Reply #15 on: May 20, 2024, 01:58:12 PM »

Great! Thank you ta0, in this case the video really helps in understanding fast what is going on.
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